Red Belt – The biggest human temptation is to settle for too little

Lottery tickets

Me: It’s 9:15 PM. Would it be crazy for me to run out and buy some lottery tickets?
Her: Do it. You’ve had a great week so far.

Last week, wrapped up several projects that I’ve been working on for months.

Then at 9PM last night, found out that another project I was working on came through AND I got a completely unsolicited five-star Vine Voice Review for The Men Made of Stone saying it was a Damn Good Novel.

For those of you that don’t know, a Vine Voice is an invitation-only accolade from Amazon that is for “the most trusted reviewers on Amazon.”

Between that and the Olympics last night, could barely sleep. Speaking of accolades and people with great weeks, watched as swimmers Dana Vollmer and Brendan Hansen broke two world records.

In my insomnia last night, thought of Sir Roger Bannister, the first person in recorded history to run a four minute mile.

Also thought of pancakes but that’s neither here nor there.

In any case, the thing about Bannister is that he could only train 45 minutes a day because he was studying to be a neurologist – in fact, he’s the author of the book on nervous system diseases.

This other fella named Pedro Valente Jr. is one of ten people on the planet that has a red belt (aka a 9th degree black belt) in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. That’s impressive enough. However, he’s also recognized by the New York Times as one of the top 5 plastic surgeons on the planet.

And, if you’re a long time reader of this blog, you know my idolization of Heady Larmarr who was not only a gorgeous film actress but also an inventor that patented the frequency-hopping technology we use in today’s mobile phones.

These people’re my idols cause they show that one can excel at numerous disparate things. They dispel the myth that one can be the best at only one thing, if anything at all.

It’ll take time, but I think I can be King of two things and Jack of four things. Put another way: The biggest human temptation is to settle for too little and these are people that refused to settle.

Or to quote yet another philosopher named Eminem:

Yo I won’t tell no lie, not a moment goes by
That I don’t pray to the sky, please I’m beggin you God
Please don’t let me be pigeon holed in no regular job
Yo I hope you can hear me homey wherever you are

———-

Lottery tickets

If you haven’t picked up a copy of my book yet, here’s the first ~60 pages of it just to see what you think:

Location: home
Mood: ambitious
Music: got every ingredient, all I need is the courage
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Regular Job

I’d rather it this way than have a regular life

…ain’t gon’ follow no footsteps I’m making my own…

I think you read me because you find my life interesting. Without a hint of arrogance or pride, I can tell you I find my life interesting.

Every time I write something, I think, man, no one’s gonna believe this.

But I write about what happens. And I know why these things – good (dates, tv shows, random meetings, free trips to Europe) and bad (dates, car accidents, insomnia, robberies), keep happening.

Because I keep trying. I keep pushing. I keep thinking I’m someone.

It is better to try and fail greatly then never try at all. And I fail all the time. Health, wealth, relationship. Every one of them is a failure – I got my arm torn out trying to fight; I got robbed of all the money I’ve made in 34 years; and the last one? You know…

And stupidly, I keep trying. Because I asked for all this.

Y’ever listen to 8 Mile by Eminem? There’re these lines that go:

don’t got enough pep The pressure’s too much man,
I’m just tryin to do what’s best

And I try, sit alone and I cry
Yo I won’t tell no lie, not a moment goes by
That I don’t pray to the sky, please I’m beggin you God
Please don’t let me be pigeon holed in no regular job

 

When I was a kid, I told God I never wanted a regular life. And it’s like He laughed and said, You got it, kid – but everything’s got a price.

Sometimes I think I should have just married No 3 and worked in that law firm and had my 2.5 kids by now. Bought myself a red Porsche. When I started to find out about everything, that’s one of the first things I thought of (the life, not the Porsche).

I think I’d rather it be this way then be stuck in a regular job. A regular life.

I’m a man, I’ma make a new plan
Time for me to just stand up, and travel new lands
Time for me to just take matters in my own hands
Once I’m over these tracks, man I’ma never look back

 

The thing that just about broke me, was when I had to tell my parents. My mom worries so. And my father? I think I’m like every son, I just want him to be proud of me.

But he told me to keep daring greatly. Cause he did. It’s what we do, he said, you have to keep trying. I would only be disappointed in you if you stopped trying.

I nodded and stammered in my crappy, crappy, Chinese, I will.

Location: 19:46, having diet ice cream@79th & Amsterdam
Mood: heartbroken
Music: I got every ingredient, all I need is the courage

Fallen Summer

I got my pad, my people and my poison. Someday, maybe my person too.

You are not superior just because you see the world in an odious light.

My friend Jaerik made an interesting observation on my blog that I don’t think I’ve ever noticed myself.

He said that I rarely do angry blog entries. Never thought of that.

I think people do angry on the internet because it’s easy and makes for pseudo-intellect. Sure there’s lots to be pissed about; life is inherently unfair.

But man, that’s the quickest way to a bitter, solitary life.

This blog is mostly about my love life because, well, I got nuthin else to complain about.

Not really.

I got my pad. I got my people. I got my poison. I just picked up a new whip to replace my old ride. Another 300 payments and it’s all mine.

Figure someday I’ll get the girl too. Someday.

For now, I’ll take the fall weather we’re having in summer here in NYC.

Speaking of which, I met this girl at Bryant Park tonight…

Location: in front of a pile of books again
Mood: content
Music: God gave me everything

I’m ok

Was just in a car accident

But my car is totaled. There was a picture up there but I deleted it because I’m trying to forget it.

Instead, here’s a picture of the blue sky.

Thank god the girl I was with, who was in the passenger seat, was wearing a seatbelt too because she’s fine too. I had just met her.

I’m still a little muddle-headed.

—–

Thanks for all the kind words. I’m going to make an appointment with the doc today.

My neck’s a bit stiff but hopefully that’ll clear up.

I just spoke to the girl; she went to work but is leaving early because she’s going to see the doc. This was only our second date. At least we’ll both remember each other vividly.

Well, in a way, this is a good date story, no? We both walked away almost completely unscathed.

On another note entirely, I was actually sleeping well last week.

Last night…not so much.

Location: 1:30AM, sitting on a curb in Harlem, praying
Mood: freaked out
Music: When i look at my life, oh me, oh my

Fathers and sons

For my dad on Father’s Day

Couldn’t celebrate father’s day because of the wedding. I saw him though.

My dad graduated from the second hardest law school in Japan – the equivalent of Princeton here. I graduated in the top third of my class; he graduated in the top 5%.

But, when he was younger than I am now, he came here to wash dishes and chop fish to feed his family. He didn’t want us growing up there.

Realize now how hard it must have been to be 4,000 miles from home, not know the language and work at jobs far beneath you.

Can barely make it outta the Upper West Side.

He said my mom cried when he came home stinking of fish guts for the first time. She was the local beauty queen; he was now a fish monger.

I thought I married a lawyer, she said.
You once believed in me enough to marry me, he said, just wait.

She did and he became the man he knew he could be.

He says that he believed in himself even if no one else did.

He says that he believes in me. I’m actually a bit surprised he’s still pulling for me.

At least you’re not gutting fish; you’re already doing better than I was.

I’d like to be the man I think I could be. I’d like to be the man he thinks I could be.

He doesn’t know about this blog (don’t tell him). But I wanna say, Thanks anyway.

I’m very grateful.

Location: 1PM, yest., doctor’s office
Mood: sick
Music: daddy’s rich And your ma is so good-looking
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